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The Easiest & Tastiest Granola Bars

I LOVE making these granola bars.  They are so simple, so easy, just throw all the ingredients in the mixer and voilà it's basically done!



Another fun, and even easier way, is to put all the ingredients in a large bowl and let the kids mix them with their hands!

Okay, here are the ingredients that I use, but really you can pick and choose, add, take away any ingredient, it's really that easy!

Ingredients:
  • 3 Cups oats (you can use quick-cooking oats or for a healthier version whole grain rolled oats)
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened organic condensed milk
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup flaked coconut 
  • 1 cup of almonds (I like to break mine up with a mallet first, or you can just used sliced almonds)

  • 1 cup (or so) of white chocolate chip (or semi sweet.  I prefer the white in this recipe) 
  • 1/2 cup cranberries (I've used both sweetened and unsweetened - whatever I have on hand) 
Directions:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).  Grease a 9x13 inch pan (or whatever you have on hand :) 
  • In large bowl, mix together the oats sweetened condensed milk, butter, coconut, almonds, chocolate chips, and cranberries. 
  • Once mixed, press into the prepared pan.  I like to line my pan with parchment paper for easier cleanup.  
  • Bake for about 20 minutes.  If you like a softer granola bar bake for about 20 - 22 minutes - when it is lightly brown around the edges.  If you want a crunchier granola bar leave for an additional 3 - 5 minutes.  Let cool for only 5 minutes and then cut into bars.  If you allow them to cool longer they will be harder to cut.  Allow to cool completely and then serve.  If you are like us, you may just eat them hot - yup, we have scalded our tongues, but they are oh so good! 

I usually make extra and I like to wrap them in Saran Wrap.  The kids can then take them for a school snack.  When I get the ingredients on sale, I can literally make 18 bars for under $2.00.  The only thing that I use up is the condensed milk.  Everything else, I have left overs to make more batches or to use in other baked goods. 


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